Huge thanks to everyone who visited livingforgottenrealms.com during October to download some or all of the 13 adventures that we released last month. It was one of the best months that we've ever had in terms of getting new content into your hands (and in terms of you hitting the website to get that new content). We very much want to keep the momentum going, not just this month, but all the way through 2013 and beyond. The download numbers that we saw last month were staggering -- there's no doubt that a huge audience still exists for 4th Edition even with the development of D&D Next in full swing, and we are honored and humbled that LFR continues to be played and enjoyed by so many people around the world.
That having been said, if you've been following this blog, you know that we actually had a more ambitious goal for last month than what we achieved. The goal was to release new versions of the campaign rules documents in addition to clearing the adventure backlog. We ended up releasing 13 adventures: 9 adventures from the backlog along with 4 brand-new adventures that had not previously been announced (CORE4-3, CORE4-4, ELTU4-1, and ELTU4-2). We still have 4 adventures from the backlog to go, along with the updated Campaign Guide and Meta-Org Guide, and we're working to get those out the door as early in November as we possibly can. We've announced INTRO4-2 for November already, and it's also very likely that we will pick up one or two more new adventure releases this month as we have a number of new adventures that are nearly ready along with some more Dungeon adaptations to unleash.
I can't honestly say that I am disappointed by a month in which we managed to get 13 adventures out the door, but at the same time, we didn't do everything that we said we were going to do last month, and for that I apologize. It's very important to the LFR Global Admins to get back on track with the community of players, DMs, and event organizers in terms of us being able to publish a release schedule and then hit the dates that we say we're going to hit. I sincerely hope that we have made some progress in that direction with what we accomplished in October -- but we didn't get it all done, and by no means are we slowing down or slacking off in our efforts.
We don't just want to get caught up and stay caught up; we want to get ahead and stay ahead. When adventure release dates sit on the home page and get pushed back month after month, everybody suffers. Authors get demoralized, convention organizers can't plan their schedules effectively, and the community loses faith and trust in the campaign staff. We are acutely aware of this and we have made (and continue to make) behind-the-scenes changes to remove bottlenecks in our planning, development, and release processes. Clearly we're not all the way there yet, but the fact that we moved 4 brand-new adventures through the process last month while at the same time clearing 9 adventures from the backlog I hope is at least a data point that things are moving in the right direction.
Over the next week we will release the remaining 4 adventures from the backlog (I have something special planned to accompany the release of AGLA2-4, whose authors have put up with delays far beyond what anyone should have to endure) along with the updated campaign rules, including, yes, the new meta-organization guide. You may wonder why we didn't prioritize the campaign rules (which haven't been updated in over a year) ahead of some of the adventures from the backlog. That prioritization certainly can be (and has been) debated. Ultimately, if you have adventures, you can always play, even if the rules are a bit out of date or there are meta-org references that don't have supporting details written, but the converse is not true. You can't play if you have rules and meta-orgs but there aren't any adventures. Getting the backlog cleared (and making sure that the new adventures that were ready to release last month, got released within a few days of the final turnover, instead of increasing the size of the backlog) was the most important thing. I know that folks have been waiting patiently for the new meta-org document in particular. Nothing can make up for lost time, but I think you will be happy with the new version.
Please continue to let us know your thoughts on the Community Forum and we in turn will continue to keep you updated on the state of the campaign and what's coming out when. In the near future we should be ready to announce the full slate of adventures for Winter Fantasy 2013, along with a preview of our overall plans, some hints about the major story arcs, and the general shape of the release schedule for next year. More details to follow!
Thank you, as always, for your support of Living Forgotten Realms. Without you there is no campaign.